My husband and I have been working everyday on trying to get our first investment property. Still no luck. We are trying to find something in Baltimore City or county. MLS searches are not working for us it seems that All cash buyers win these. Would love any suggestions on how to get our feet in the door and start our investment journey. Would love to talk to wholesalers, folks with experience with auctions...thank you in advance!
Welcome to BP, @Cassandra Murray
When you say "investment property" are you looking to flip, buy and hold, do the BRRRR method, maybe house hack? I feel like you may need to tune in on a specific strategy based on your desired end goal. If you're looking for a diverse group of experience, I would attend the local meet ups. Once you get a little more specific I can give you a better input. Best of luck.
Hi Eric- thank you for getting back to me! We want to start with buy and hold. When you say local meet ups- are you referring to the Baltimore REIA? Thanks so much!!
@Cassandra Murray Yes the Baltimore REIA plus the 5-10 other groups in the area. One of the best networking groups is the free landlord lunch every Friday Spirits West 2601 Wilkens Ave 12:00 to about 2:00. Nothing to buy unless you want food, nothing to join, no presentation or sale pitch, just show up.
You mention cash buyers are getting the deals. that makes me think you are not a cash buyer. If you are not a cash buyer auctions are not an option. There is never a contingency for financing and You simply can't count on getting financing before time for settlement. Many cash buyers aren't really cash buyers they use hard money or private lenders.
How long have you been looking? It probably takes on average 6 months for a new investor to do their 1st deal. Right now inventory is low and competition for them is high. Yet I just sold a deal today for $24K that needed modest work and was a listed property. There are deals on the MLS. Sometimes they are just hidden well.
Thank you so much for your insight. We have been looking since this past May. My husband and I are really excited but I also understand it's going to take some time. I'm going to keep the networking group information and hopefully can attend this month. At this moment we are not cash buyers.
@Cassandra Murray Congrats on working towards your first property!
Since you are not a cash buyer, there isn't much point in you talking to wholesalers or going to auctions and such.
First things first. Are you preapproved for a rental mortgage? If not, you need to go do that first.
Second, do you know how to analyze a potential property? There's the rental property calculator you can use right here on BP. And you can find out most expenses such as water and property tax by looking up the property's bills online. Insurance you'd have to take an educated guess.
Third, are you familiar with Maryland / Baltimore rental property requirements and rental laws? If not, you need to get familiar with them now. Do not wait until you own the property to find out all the inspections and certs you must have. And don't wait until you have a bad tenant to find out what the first step in eviction is or what rights you have. There are differences to learn about between the City and the County. For example, the County is a bit more stable when it comes to property values while the City is "block to block" as you may have heard. Water is quite expensive in the City. I think taxes might be too but unsure. Rental laws are a bit more tenant friendly in the City. All things to research. All things to consider.
These are 3 actionable steps you can take--if you haven't already--while on your search for the right property.
Also know that Baltimore city (and especially County) is a very hot market right now with investors buying like crazy. I am a cash buyer and it was even difficult for me to get a property under contract recently. Many of these investors--in my opinion--are overpaying because they are paying more than my formulas would allow. So do not be afraid to lose a deal. Don't buy for the sake of buying.
Thank you so much for taking the time and replying! All the things you wrote are very helpful!